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boufa06 11-17-2006 11:19 AM

Essential items in the freezer
Having lived in a tropical country where there are no seasons for most of my life, it was quite a change when I made the move here. I found myself saddled with a lot of summer clothes that will last me for many years to come. When it comes to the kitchen, the freezer had to be cleared out of certain items in preparation for storing new seasonal stuff. I have since found out that it is necessary to stock up the following:

1. Chopped tomatoes as I do not trust off-season ones that may be loaded with hormones.
2. Chilli sauce
3. Herbs like basil, dill, etc
4. Lamb meat
5. Prawns (available as fresh only in winter)
6. Wild asparagus (which grows only in spring)
7. French beans
8. Cranberry beans (fully grown and shelled but not dried)

There may be the occasional fish, fruit, fruit juice, or local greens but my mainstays are the ones above. The reason for having to freeze is that all of the above are available only during a single season of the year. What is your experience? Do you store seasonal produce when in season or do you rely on the supermarket alone?

SierraCook 11-17-2006 11:37 AM

With fruits and vegetables I mostly use what is in season. I like to keep a variety of meats in the freezer because at the local grocer the meat is very expensive. When I go do my major shopping, every couple of months or so, I stock up. Here is what I consider essential items for my freezer:

Ground beef
Stew meat
Chicken breasts
Pork chops
Pork roasts
Lamb chops
Whole wheat bread

I like to buy my vegetables fresh, but I do have some frozen:
green beans

SizzlininIN 11-17-2006 11:42 AM

I keep a variety of meats also:

Chicken Leg Quarters
Whole Chickens
Boneless/Skinless Chicken Breast
Chuck Roast
Pork Chops w/bone
Boneless Pork Chops
Ground Beef

Other Items:
Frozen Corn
Frozen Peas
Cheese Filled Raviolis

attie 11-17-2006 12:39 PM

We keep mainly what ever is on special at the supermarket meat wise and then some corn, beans and mango from their seasons.
Most importantly is the bottle of Scotch Whisky, they tell me that for every week in the freezer it ages one year, and that's important :smile:

pdswife 11-17-2006 12:43 PM

I always have

ground beef
home grown herbs
beef and chicken broth ( homemade)
and leftovers that can be thawed and warmed up for quick dinners.

licia 11-17-2006 02:27 PM

pdswife, I bet you can make a great meal in a jiffy. I enjoy leftovers, too.

SizzlininIN 11-17-2006 03:25 PM


Originally Posted by pdswife
I always have

ground beef
home grown herbs
beef and chicken broth ( homemade)
and leftovers that can be thawed and warmed up for quick dinners.

I've never even thought about freezing bacon before......will have to do that next time its on sale.

ChefJune 11-17-2006 03:49 PM

There are a lot of things that I always keep in the freezer if I have them, but I'm trying to thinkg of just the things I try to always have on hand and that would call the freezer home.... :ermm:

Butter (buy it on sale)
Kenya Coffee (it's sometimes hard to find, and it's my favorite!
Whole Wheat flour,
Rye Flour
Chicken Stock
Rennet (for cheese making)
SAF dry yeast, both for sweet and "regular" baking
Basil in olive oil (beginnings of pesto or pistou)
Lemon Zest

oops! forgot the leftovers or rather extras... I try to make recipes for 4 even tho there's usually only one or two for dinner, then I can pull out the extras on "those" nights. Also always try to keep a pint of Doxsee Clam Chili for the "in case."

urmaniac13 11-17-2006 04:11 PM

There are just two of us, and Cris has this tendency of shopping as if there were 10 ravenous mouths to feed. Also some items like cheese, nuts etc. can be bought at much better prices when bought in bulk. Plus we have problems with mothes, so we must keep things like extra flour, grains etc. in the freezer, too. So our 1 meter (1 yard+) wide big freezer is always full!!

Aside from the above mentioned items, there are always

veggies, fruits (either bought fresh in season, or bought already frozen)
various sauces prepared as extra
homemade guacamole base (tomatoes and coriander to be added)
puff pastry sheets
chicken breast
pork chop
minced beef
and of course, homemade ice cream!

Alix 11-17-2006 04:24 PM

Well we have a smallish freezer. I generally have:

a few farm chickens
pork chops/roast
ground beef
roast or two
carcasses of chickens past for soup
a few salmon fillets
bags upon bags of diced rhubarb for pies
bags of frozen fruit (black/rasp/blue/strawberry) for smoothies
blocks of butter or marg
bags of veggies (garden or store bought)

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